Thursday, October 4, 2012

Beat Myeloma

Kyle on a long run, training while on our family vacation. I joined him on my bike the last few miles.
This weekend we are heading to Chicago to watch my brothers complete the Chicago Marathon, to raise money for Multiple Myeloma research.

I'm so excited! And so proud of them. And so grateful to those who have donated to this worthy cause.

My Dad was diagnosed with multiple myeloma seven years ago. At the time he was having terrible back pain which as it turned out was caused by numerous lesions up his spine. Bone pain and/or fracture is often the first sign of myeloma because this cancer lives in the bone marrow and weakens the bone structure. By the time the bones are fracturing and the cancer is found, it's often pretty late stage. This was the case with my Dad.

Cancer sucks. I've watched my Dad go through hell and back. It's hard for those of us that love him so dearly, to watch. I'm not even sure my dad will ever let us know how hard it is to spend years cycling through chemo treatments, constantly scheduling check-ups out of state with his specialists, or undergoing countless bone marrow biopsies. Or what it must feel like to live day to day with cancer sharing your cells. He makes it seem..... well, okay. He goes about his days just the same as he always has, with a twinkle in his eye.

I know that no matter what, cancer will never have the last word in our family. Never has, never will. Cancer has not soured my Dad's perspective that life is a beautiful, fun, humorous adventure. His optimism, faith and that twinkle in his eye has never ever lessened.

Cancer is there. It always is. In his body and on our minds. But it's not the boss. It will never get the best of my Dad or our family and it feels good to know that. Perhaps it's his positive attitude that has freed us kids from worrying too much.

On Sunday when my brothers are running the marathon we'll all be cheering loudly on the sidelines and having fun together. The only reason cancer will even be mentioned is because now there's more money to destroy myeloma.

Take that cancer.

For more information on multiple myeloma, go here

For information on the myeloma program at the University of Iowa and it's director Dr. Tricot, perhaps the best doctor EVER (I'm very partial), go here

For more information on the marathon that my brothers Kyle and Gavin are running and to make a donation if you'd like, visit their facebook page or their donation page.


Karen said...

Awesome! Mile 6 or 9 is right on the corner of our block, so we will be out cheering for them!!

Anonymous said...

I've been reading your blog for awhile now and was excited that you moved to my state (I'm on the east side of the state, but friends have a place in Holland near Lake Mackitowa (sp?)). Anyway - I lost my Grandma (my Mom's Mom) to multiple myeloma in 2006 after a three year battle. My Dad's sister is in her third year after being diagnosed. She had a stem cell transplant a year ago, when my daughter was born (their immune systems are the same age :). And most amazingly, a friend's mom lived for 15+ years with multiple myeloma. It's such a scary, awful disease...not to be a creeper, but I was very proud of what your brothers did for your Dad. Cancer does suck.

Keep writing!